TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Three Yellow Jackets scored in double-figures, but a late rally fell short at Alabama as the Crimson Tide hung on for a 67-65 victory in Coleman Coliseum. The loss pushed Tech to 9-2 on the season, while Alabama improved to 9-1 with the win.
“I thought our foul trouble in the first half really hurt us — we had a 10-point lead and three starters with two fouls,” commented head coach MaChelle Joseph. “Alabama was then able to tie the score and get a run on us. We had to battle the entire game to get back in control. I thought when Imani [Tilford] went out with her fourth foul that was the difference in the game.”
How It Happened
It was a tale of quarters in the first half as the teams traded stanzas. Tech opened the contest gaining a double-digit lead within the first 10 minutes, but the advantage reversed in the second quarter as Alabama outscored the Yellow Jackets 22-9. The teams stood at a standstill at halftime, tied at 29-29.
The Yellow Jackets limited the Crimson Tide to one field goal in the first quarter, leading 20-7 at the first break. After Alabama grabbed the lead early, Francesca Pan erased the deficit with a 5-0 run, forcing Alabama to call its first timeout. The Crimson Tide connected on a pair from the free throw line before the Yellow Jackets opened a 13-1 run to close the quarter. Alabama used the second quarter to slowly chip away at its deficit and used a three-pointer from Shaquera Wade to claim its first lead since the opening frame at the 1:25 mark. Imani Tilford hit a layup to end the quarter with the teams tied 29-29.
Tech held the advantage almost the entire third quarter, leading by as many as eight points, 44-36, off a Katarina Vuckovic bucket. Alabama ended the third quarter with a 9-4 spurt to cut the score to 48-45 at the final intermission. The Crimson Tide immediately knotted the score out of the break and took the final lead on a Meoshonti Knight bucket. Alabama would lead by as many as seven in the final quarter before Tech came within one point using a 9-3 run sparked by Edeferioka. The Yellow Jackets pulled within one point twice before the final buzzer. Wade hit the back end of a pair of free throws with 6.6 seconds left on the clock as Tech setup its final play, but the shot was off the mark, sealing the win for Alabama.
* Tech moved to 9-2 on the season with the loss
* Alabama improved to 4-1 against Georgia Tech in series history
* Zaire O’Neil led the Yellow Jackets with 17 points on the afternoon, shooting 7-of-9 from the field
* Antonia Peresson (12) and Chanin Scott (10) capped the trio scoring in double-figures
* Alabama finished 12-of-18 from the charity stripe, while Tech was 11-of-22
* The Crimson Tide hit nine three-pointers (9-26) for a 34.6 percent efficiency
* Alabama won the battle on the glass 48-43 including a 17-13 edge in offensive rebounds
* GT outscored Alabama in the paint 32-18 and 23-8 off the bench
Georgia Tech continues this two-game road stretch and heads to Middle Tennessee State for a 7:30 p.m. EST tip in Murfreesboro on Dec. 22.